Val Boothe fights for two during the Fort Hays State game. - Trey Scales photo
**For Immediate Release**
Lady Aggies Drop a Pair of Close Basketball Games
- by Scott Puryear of OPSU Sports on 02/19/2007
Goodwell, Okla. - The Oklahoma Panhandle State women’s basketball team played a pair of rugged games on Thursday and Saturday, and though they worked hard, they came up just short in both of them, losing to Fort Hays, 66-62, and to Lincoln, 64-61.
Fort Hays State 66, LADY AGGIES 62
On Thursday evening the Lady Tigers of Fort Hays State visited the OPSU gym and defeated the Lady Aggies 66-62. It was exciting, it was close, and there were a total of 52 fouls called in a very physical game.
The Lady Aggies played well enough in the first half to jump out to a 39-31 lead at the halftime break. Though OPSU continued to play hard and tough in the second half, they had some trouble containing Fort Hays’ Sheena Kuntzsch who scored 20 second half points to lead her team to the win. Kuntzsch scored 29 on the night.
Nina Kuleff led the Lady Aggies with 17 points and nine rebounds and Sarah Polson netted 13. Alisha Sladek dropped in nine points and Megan Hamilton scored seven. Val Booth continues to be a hard worker for OPSU and the senior scored seven points and had six rebounds in 20 minutes on the court.
Lincoln 64, LADY AGGIES 61
On Saturday evening, the Lady Aggies were in Jefferson City, Missouri for a Heartland Conference game with Lincoln University. A last second three–point attempt fell short for OPSU and Lincoln came away with a 64-61 victory.
Though both teams worked hard, neither shot particularly well in the first half and Lincoln grabbed a 30-24 halftime lead. Each squad came back from the break determined for victory and as the second half opened, OPSU’s Alisha Sladek quickly hit a long three pointer to make it 30-27.
The game continued to be close and near the 9:30 minute mark, Lincoln held the slimmest of margins at 46-45. Just over a minute later, Megan Hamilton dropped in a pair of free throws to give the Lady Aggies a 47-46 advantage.
At the 7:20 mark – it was a tie ballgame at 48 points each, and with just under six minutes left, Hamilton canned two more charity shots to give the Lady Aggies a 52-49 lead.
In the final minutes, things continued to be exciting, and with 3:30 left Lincoln surged ahead by a single point at 57-56.
The Lady Aggies refused to quit and a three-point Hamilton rocket cut the Lincoln advantage to 62-61 with ten seconds left. After a pair of Lincoln free throws made it 64-61, a last second OPSU shot that could have tied the game fell just short – and Lincoln had the win.
Post game, OPSU’s veteran head Jerry Olson gave Lincoln their due, saying, “They made the plays when they had to, and we didn’t.” Olson added that the game may well have been decided at the free throw line where the Lady Aggies converted just 14 of their 27 attempts compared to Lincoln’s 13 of 16.
Hamilton posted a game high 20 points while Sladek and Yadira Ortega each knocked down ten points. Nina Kuleff scored six and pulled down eight rebounds while Val Boothe scored five and earned a team high 11 boards.
With the win, the Lady Aggies’ season record fell to 7-18 overall and 2-6 in the Heartland Conference while Lincoln jumped to 3-6 in the league and 7-18 overall.